I am Patricia, and I work as a post-doc in the SEM group developing new strategies for the production of halogenated building blocks designing cell factories based on Pseudomonas putida.
I work in engineering bio-based production of halogenated organic compounds, as well as in assessing the effects of halides in P. putida’s physiology. The soil bacterium Pseudomonas putida has received considerable attention in the last few years as a cell factory due, among other reasons, to its high tolerance towards stressful conditions and a wide range of compounds such as organic solvents and metal ions. It can also accommodate reactions involving very toxic substrates and products that other microbial hosts cannot handle. For this reason, I aim at developing cell factories for microbial-based biohalogenations using this bacterium as the functional chassis. The final output of these novel biochemical networks will be a suite of halogenated building blocks that can be used as precursors for drug development and other industrially-relevant halogenated fine chemicals. To achieve this purpose, the in-depth study of the physiological effects of biohalogenation precursors and products on the cells is of major importance. By applying a combination of genome-wide omic techniques and quantitative physiology, I aim at deciphering the stress response of P. putida towards halides (both inorganic and organofluorines) in order to understand and exploit the underlying mechanisms for metabolic engineering.